Plus, Tunes & Blooms, Walk the Moon and Brian Newman return to Cincy, The Chris Comer Space Dub Sextet debuts and local acts unite for 80’s Pop Rocks benefit
0 Comments · Wednesday, April 1, 2015
Cincinnati Indie Rock trio Old City celebrates the release of The Sun is My Light, the "Tunes & Blooms" concert series returns to the Cincinnati Zoo, the 80's Pop Rocks benefit celebrates ’80s music and raises funds for charity, Brian Newman returns from NYC for a rare local show, Jazz pianist debuts Chris Comer Space Dub Sextet and Walk the Moon plays sold out show at Bogart's.
by Nick Grever
Post American Idol, Cincinnati’s Jess Lamb scales back but continues her teaching job
For some musicians, their 9-to-5 is little more than a means to an end. Pizza and guitar strings don’t pay for themselves, after all. Others take pride in their work, both on stage and in the “real world,” but view them as two parts of a whole.But for Jess Lamb, her twin identities as a musician and teacher are deeply intertwined. She works hard in both professional avenues and has put a large amount of effort into maintaining them, even during her post-American Idol influx of activities. It’s a balancing act with some unexpected complications that she is still learning to walk gracefully. But for Lamb, there is no other choice.“I think that the public has seen me as a teacher and I don’t want my name to be tainted by this other persona, this other career, this other life. So I don’t want to be slosh drunk. I don’t want to be like Jim Morrison in my experimenting with life. But at the same time there’s a whole other vibe with playing in venues, playing in bars and it is very different from the teacher thing,” Lamb explains.Before Idol, Lamb’s work as a musician and an ESL teacher were more easily separated. Nowadays, with the added exposure that Idol has brought to her and her late-night performances around town, she has had to go to greater lengths to protect the sanctity of both. A shot of Jameson may not be thrown back with the same careless abandon as a few months prior and photo ops are utterly devoid of the counter-cultural staples of, say, a middle finger or devil horns. This isn’t to say that Lamb was or is a reckless partier at night and a quiet bookworm during the day.Rather, what happens at night can bleed into the daylight hours and her work in one aspect of life can’t compromise the other. She has to take into account who her new audience members may be and how they learned of Lamb. Being a teacher requires maintaining professionalism at all times. When a teacher is shown on national television, keeping that even-headed mentality all day and all night becomes even more important.Considering all the time that Lamb has spent on her music after her Idol run, some may wonder why she doesn’t put the teaching on hold for the time being. Between the Idol recaps she does regularly for Fox 19 since leaving the show, the myriad interviews, the residencies at Japps in Over-the-Rhine and Jags in West Chester (as well as other shows), the studio work and all the other opportunities that have arisen, finding time for teaching is pretty much impossible at this point. In fact, Lamb has cut down her teaching work to roughly four hours a week, doing basic lesson planning and similar activities. But she still carves out time for her teaching for a very important purpose.“I don’t do it for the money, it’s not sustaining me. I do it for my spirit. It’s for something that feels important, I don’t know that what I’m doing all the time feels important,” Lamb says.She views being a teacher and an entertainer as two professions with two different contributions to society. Music and teaching both give something back to the community at large, but she feels that teaching impacts the public on a much larger scale. While singing in a smoky bar reaches a small amount of people, teaching has a much larger reach.Ultimately, Lamb is a musician and teacher in equal measure. At this point, the music is taking more of her time, but she is determined to not let it take all of it.“I don’t want to cancel out one or the other with a teacher persona that’s too square or a Rock star persona that’s too crazy and unstable,” Lamb says.For Lamb, finding a mix of her two professions and passions is an ever-present struggle. When Idol rocketed her music to the forefront, she has had to constantly work to balance it out with activities that are equally as fulfilling. It hasn’t been an easy process by any means but one that she sees as absolutely necessary. Just don’t be offended if she turns down a shot of whiskey next time you run into her in the Main St. district.Nick Grever is checking in periodically with Cincinnati-based American Idol contest Jess Lamb about her post-Idol life. Check out previous "Beyond Idol Chatter" posts here. Visit jesslamb.com for music, show dates and more.
Plus, Ray's Music Exchange reunites for fourth annual show Saturday
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 25, 2015
LiVid, The Moxie Band, The Grove and Buffalo Wabs and the Price Hill Hustle celebrate new releases this weekend. Plus, Ray's Music Exchange returns for fourth annual reunion show and announces new offshoot band Rays.
Post Rock provocateurs Us, Today flip the script on their improv structure for the composed and concussive 'TenEnemies'
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Cincinnati trio Us, Today is taking things to the next level with the new full-length release 'TenEnemies.'
Plus, Go Go Buffalo and Dead Man String Band also celebrate new releases this week
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Adventurous Cincinnati Chamber Folk quartet The Happy Maladies unveil their stunning Must Love Cats project, featuring compositions from various outside composers. Plus, one-man-show Dead Man String Band celebrates the release of the new full-length I and heavy Psych Rock crew Go Go Buffalo unleashes its debut EP, It Ain't Worth It.
Plus, new release news about Bad Veins, Ronnie Verl & the Wallbangers and Sean Geil
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Buffalo Killers' Andy Gabbard gets set to release his debut solo effort, Fluff. Plus, Bad Veins remake their second album as The Mess Remade (releasing next week), Ronnie Verl & the Wallbangers celebrate their new album, Mostly Drinking Songs, and The Tillers' Sean Geil is on schedule to release four albums this month.
by Mike Breen
Cincinnati band takes "Shut Up and Dance" to daytime TV
Yesterday, Cincinnati Alt Pop foursome Walk the Moon continued its promotional blitz behind its sophomore major label album, Talking is Hard,
with a performance on Ellen DeGeneres' popular daytime talk/variety
show. After being introduced by DeGeneres as a "great Rock & Roll
band from Cincinnati, Ohio," the group played its single "Shut Up and
Dance" and singer Nicholas Petricca ran into the crowd to rock out with
audience members. Coincidentally, another Cincinnati-born band, The Afghan
Whigs, appeared on national television the night before, performing "The
Lottery" from their latest album on late night's Jimmy Kimmel Live.
Watch it here and a
web-exclusive performance of "I Am Fire," with a dash of Fleetwod Mac's
"Tusk," here. WtM also
played Kimmel late last year when the new album was released.
Walk the Moon will play a hometown show at Bogart's on
April 1 (like many shows on the band's current tour, it has already sold
out), then returns this summer to play the Bunbury Music Festival in
early June (tickets available here).
by Mike Breen
Cincy Indie Rock duo reconfigures its 2012 sophomore album and lands a new label home
On Tuesday, March 17, Cincinnati duo Bad Veins will see its latest album, The Mess Remade, released nationally. The 13-track effort isn't an entirely "new" album, but a re-recorded/remastered version of Bad Veins' sophomore full-length, The Mess We've Made, which came out in 2012 on the Modern Outsider label. The record — which features new cover art, as well — comes after some big changes in lead Vein Benjamin Davis' band — the departure of original drummer Sebastien Schultz (who now plays with local Indie Pop group Multimagic), the addition of new drummer Jake Bonta and a new label home, the third nationally-distributed label in Bad Veins' lifespan (its self-titled debut was released on Dangerbird Records). The Mess Remade is being released on the Dynamite Music imprint, a new company founded by Marco Liuzzo and Mitch Davis (son of music biz legend Clive Davis). The label is partnered with Caroline, which is part of Capitol Records and Universal Music Distribution. Bad Veins are the company's second announced signees, following Pop singer Ryan Cabrera. The Mess Remade includes two new tracks, "I Shut My Heart Down" and a cover of The Muppets' classic "Rainbow Connection" (Davis performed the song solo to open the 2013 Cincinnati Entertainment Awards ceremony). The early release of "Rainbow Connection" in January and last month's puppet-filled music video release (premiered at The AV Club) caught some buzz online. The album also features a shorter "radio edit" of the leadoff track "Kindness," as well as the original 5-minutes-plus version. Here is a video clip for the new "Kindness":And here's the "Rainbow Connection" clip:Noisetrade.com has a four-track sampler of Remade available here if you can't wait a week.Find more about Bad Veins here.
by Nick Grever
Cincy's Jess Lamb talks American Idol ‘controversy’ and myriad projects on the horizon
Jess Lamb’s initial performance for the judges on American Idol’s bus tour was undeniably a show stopper. It wrapped up the episode and introduced America to one of Cincinnati’s brightest talents, while also moving her on to the Hollywood round after impressing the judges. Her second televised appearance, a group rendition of Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass,” was considered one of the stronger performances of the Idol Groups round.
That is why it shocked many viewers when she was quietly cut from the show after the performance.
Allegations quickly followed blaming Lamb’s cut on comments that Jennifer Lopez had made regarding the age of some of the contestants, due to Lamb being one of the older performers in the competition (she is only 29). If there’s anything that Lamb would like to set straight it is this: Don’t believe everything you hear. And this is far from the end of the road for her.
“Honestly, I got nothing but really awesome comments from [Lopez]. No bad comments, nothing,” Lamb explains.
Lamb is still unsure as to exactly why she didn’t move on to the next round — American Idol never provided her with a reason — but she does not believe that it was Lopez’s comments or her age that caused the cut. Lamb frequently questioned the editing of the episode and the presentation of Lopez’s comments while discussing the episode and the ensuing fallout.
While the cut was undeniably a blow to Lamb, it is one she is quickly recovering from. In fact, when the episode aired, she wasn’t even able to watch because she was working on one of her myriad new projects at the time.
“I’m busier since Idol than I ever have been. I’m working with Bootsy [Collins], writing with his backup singer, talking with his wife about a project she wants me to work on, preparing for [record label] showcases,” Lamb says.
While Idol’s promised record contract is now out of reach, that hasn’t slowed down Lamb’s work towards her goal of signing with a label and releasing a full-length album. In fact, Idol gave her the exposure that she needed to land on the radar of several big names within the Pop music community. “Grammy-award winner” is descriptor not often connected to people working with local music acts, but it applies in this instance. (Lamb can’t divulge too much information about certain facets of her industry interactions, so vague hints will have to do for now.)
Details are still being discussed and Lamb is still under Idol’s contractual obligations restricting her from signing with any labels before the show is over and a set period of time has passed since its finale. But Lamb is making the best of the time between now and May.
“I’m just trying to do what I’m legally able to do,” Lamb says.
While American Idol continues its search for the next American pop star, Lamb is determined to grow her career using many of the tools that she’s been using for years. She’s constantly attempting to break into new markets, make music with new people and perform for new audiences. The only difference is that she now has a national TV show appearance to help with promotion and publicity. The details of her release from American Idol may be shrouded in a bit of controversy, but ultimately what will endure are her fans’ memories of her performances. It is those memories that will be reignited once American Idol runs its course and Lamb is able to finally take the steps she’s been feverishly working towards putting in place.
And with several months till Idol’s run completes, Lamb has plenty of time to make some very big plans.
Nick Grever’s Beyond Idol Chatter blogs follow the post-American Idol activities, career moves and achievements of Cincinnati vocalist Jess Lamb.
Plus, Freekbass signs to Ropeadope, natihiphop.com launches and the Bunbury Music Festival reveals 2015 lineup
0 Comments · Wednesday, March 4, 2015
Americana/Folk/Country group Honey & Houston releases its stunning debut album, Barcelona. Plus, Freekbass signs to Ropeadope Records, local Hip Hop music blog natihiphop.com celebrates its launch and the Bunbury Music Festival reveals its 2015 lineup.